Family business owners, along with estate lawyers, CPAs, and appraisers, piled into an Internal Revenue Service auditorium yesterday to pan proposed Treasury Department rules they say will wreak havoc on their legacy plans. The proposed rules, known as the 2704 regs, would curb valuation discounts and mean increased estate taxes on the deaths of owners of family businesses.
That leaves advisors and their clients in a bind. “It’s a pretty uncertain time as to how to plan,” says Paul McCawley, an estate planner with Greenberg Traurig in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Some clients are moving forward with transactions with valuation discounts, while others have put planning on hold. Valuation discounts are just one piece of the puzzle.